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Friday, June 21, 2024

Amazon MGM Studios Show Off ‘Red One’ To Exhibitors, Unveil Future Slate

While Amazon MGM Studios didn’t take the stage at CinemaCon, they did meet with exhibitors and key press to strut their future theatrical slate, in particular they showed off ten minutes of the Dwayne Johnson and Chris Evans’ movie Red One. While we agree to keep mum about the details of the Santa Claus rescue movie, let’s just say the originally conceived for Prime Video title is definitely meant for theatrical, which is where it’s going on Nov. 15; the only wide release currently on that weekend.

Let’s just say that Red One is a fire-breathing Christmas action movie that completely reinvents the holiday genre. There hasn’t been a mass appealing Christmas tentpole in six years, the last being Illumination/Universal’s The Grinch which made over a half billion worldwide. Red One is a really fun original action film for both Johnson and Evans, and it’s a world building piece of IP which lends itself to potential sequels set around different holidays.

In addition, Amazon MGM made official that several projects are getting theatrical releases. In total, 11 big screen titles are planned into 2026 with more to-be-announced. 

What’s new on the current theatrical schedule is Plan B’s The Nickel Boys which will hit theaters this year, the movie based on Colson Whitehead‘s Pulitzer Prize-winning novel and starring Oscar nom Aunjanue Ellis (King Richard).

There’s also the Bart Layton directed Crime 101 based on the Don Winslow novella which will be released in 2025. Deadline originally reported that Amazon was in the running to win the project for $100M. No talent deals are closed, but when we announced Pedro Pascal and Chris Hemsworth were circling. Working Title‘s Eric Fellner and Tim Bevan, and Shane Salerno‘s Story Factory are the production companies that put the package together along with CAA.

Also destined for theaters next year is the Luca Guadagnino directed, Julia Roberts starring After the Hunt which is produced by Imagine Entertainment’s Brian Grazer and Allan Mandelbaum and Guadagnino’s Frenesy banner. The film is an intense dramatic thriller about a college professor (Roberts) who finds herself at a personal and professional crossroads when a star pupil levels an accusation against one of her colleagues and a dark secret from her own past threatens to come to light.

Coming in 2026 is the Ryan Gosling headlining and produced astronaut movie Project Hail Mary from scribe Drew Goddard and Phil Lord and Christopher Miller directing. In addition to Gosling, producers on the project include Lord, Miller, Aditya Sood, Amy Pascal, Rachel O’Connor, and Andy Weir.

These titles join Amazon MGM’s other big pics on the horizon: Challengers (April 26), My Old Ass (Aug 2), The Fire Inside (Aug 9), Blink Twice (Aug 23), Levon’s Trade (Jan. 17, 2025), and Mercy (Aug. 15, 2025). 

In outlining the studio’s theatrical strategy, Amazon MGM Studios’ head of film Courtenay Valenti said: “From global, action films like The Beekeeper, to accessible, auteur-driven commercial fare like Challengers, to world-creating movies like Red One, our goal at Amazon MGM is to make movies that are big, broad stories defined by movie stars and a specific directorial vision that create cultural conversation and demand to be seen in the theater.”

“In our dynamic and always-evolving industry, we’re proud to be a part of preserving the theatrical experience and bringing people back to theaters,” said Kevin Wilson, Head of Theatrical Distribution at Amazon MGM Studios. “We are working to strategically craft our slate to include more theatrical releases than ever before, and we are just getting started. In our first year at CinemaCon under one umbrella as Amazon MGM Studios, we’re thrilled to unveil a glimpse of some of our theatrical titles that audiences can look forward to.”

Amazon MGM’s MGM theatrical and Amazon Original Movies groups have all of their production and development–both streaming and theatrical–under the studio’s head of film production and development, Julie Rapaport. The studio’s Orion Pictures label is committed to amplifying underrepresented voices, while their The Wonder Project label is dedicated to faith-based content. 

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